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We have recently (January 22, 2018) learned about an outbreak of Canine Influenza (H3N2) in Central California. There have been 97 cases in these California communities. The outbreak stretches from Reno to the San Jose area and into parts of the San Francisco Bay Area. There is a dog in Grants Pass, Oregon that was diagnosed also. This dog had travelled from Reno.
Yes, there is a vaccine that can be given to dogs. The Oregon Veterinary Medical Association (OVMA) and the Oregon State Public Health Veterinarian recommend proactive vaccination of at-risk dogs for Canine Influenza Virus to protect these canine patients and to prevent a possible outbreak in our communities.
The vaccine can be given to puppies as young as 8 weeks of age. In general dogs should be vaccinated with a 2-dose series of vaccine, 3 weeks apart. Full immunity does not occur until 7-10 days after the second immunization.
Dogs that come into contact with other dogs are potentially at risk. Here is a list of activities and lifestyles that may result in exposure to the influenza virus.
Animal Shelter exposure
Frequenting Dog Parks or other public areas that other dogs frequent
Travel to other states (California) or to other parts of Oregon
Puppy classes, dog training classes, agility classes
Therapy dog work – dogs going into public spaces
Canine Day Care programs
The clinical signs very much resemble the clinical signs of flu in people…
Lethargy or inactivity
Pneumonia – lung infection
Lack of appetite
Give us a call to discuss the appropriateness of the canine influenza vaccination for your canine companions.